Greenland

The bell clatters ‘Time’ on another quiet night
tucked off the shore front
In the precious warmth of a Sisimiut tavern
I take another jar, tilt it back and drain
but still there are no answers waiting
Slouching on the bar stool
and licked by shifting shadows
lulled to doze
by the constant comb of a shuffling sea
An absent-minded shiver washes over
and, suddenly, so softly
your pale arm around my shoulder
You put your hand on top of mine
My fingers splay
and for the briefest moment
yours warmly slip between them

How did you find me
I’ve gone as far as I can go
and still you reach me
I’ve run as far as I can run
yet still you’re haunting
In every cell of me
there lives an apology
always longing for release
I’ve got a skull full of sea
and the sting of that thing, it lingers
squid ink, blotting out my smile
A cloud of darkness, I always carry
And like the sci-fi turquoise skies above
your patient ghost won’t let me hide here

Through the coloured houses
spilling warm light on the snow fields
The endless beauty of this country
does its best to ease my soul-ache
I stand by the winter-beached boats
as the ice shelf cracks and sheers
ten ton tears crashing hard into the brine

And I wonder
which will be the first to end
the frost of our faded friendship
or the world…

[2022]

Thanks for reading.

Published by

Tom Alexander

"Art is a lie that tells the truth"

6 thoughts on “Greenland”

  1. Fantastic images Tom. These lines… ‘I’ve got a skull full of sea
    and the sting of that thing, it lingers’… Seriously 👏 Nearly knocked me off my feet. Bravo. Bravo. Now I’m off to look up images of Greenland 😆

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Bree… so pleased you picked out that line. There a couple in here I felt excited about. Ultimately, this is a strange poem and I don’t anticipate it being a very popular one. The narrator is overwhelmed by emotions they could presumably so easily manage. It was fun to write though. I spent a long time looking at photos of Greenland and now I really want to visit there – it’s on my ‘list’. Thanks for reading.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Tara! A bit of a ghost story, haunted by regret. I love stories like this but I know they’re not for everyone. I’m so pleased you got on board this little raft and sailed to Greenland with me.

      Liked by 1 person

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